As I write the sun is shining but the cold has a firm grip on us in Minnesota. We are set for another long hard winter and this will be a challenge for me. After 14 years in this place I have learned a few things, even though loving cold weather is not one of them. I have learned to change my expectations and objectives to fit closer with reality, so that I do not constantly bang my head against the walls of limitations that the climate places on me. I am learning to garden within the realms of possibility better than I did at first. My plant losses in the winter are fewer, my loss of plants to deer is reduced, and though I don't particularly like it, I am finally starting to be a bit more sensible.
Sensibleness is not my forte, sadly, but although I am not young any more, I can still learn slowly and change by increments. I must say that there is a plus side to living in the realms of possibility, as the disappointments are fewer. There is a humility that recognizes that I am not God and cannot make Minnesota warm, or make certain plants grow in frigid weather. I am having to grow in creativity so that I can still dream, imagine and create within these confines of limitation, and knitting, writing and cooking are now becoming outlets for me. In many ways the effect of having MS is similar to what this cold weather is like. There are some things I just can't do no matter how much I would like to, but the are ways to still enjoy life, even if I can't always do what I want. Last week I had a wonderful time attending the Prairie Home Companion in Rochester, after being a long time fan. The show was just wonderful and I was blessed to be there. I have had many great conversations with people in my home and I have enjoyed spending time with a friend who is a landscape architect. We bury ourselves down with Pintrest, dreaming and wondering at the amazing plants there are and things you can do with them. Even though I cannot get out and dig right now I can plan and dream and this last summer we created a lovely new garden of hardy, deer resistant plants. The students help with the heavy work (my shovelling skills are laughable) and I buy plants and arrange and tend them.
Creativity can be fed by overcoming obstacles, whether they are health or weather. Many things are out of our control, but creativity finds a way to overcome and thrive. The biggest battle is in the attitude.